Discover Galapagos & Ecuador

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Ecuador & Galápagos, Galápagos

Best time to go: January to March, June to August

14 Nights | from £5,995pp


Holiday type: Tailor-made

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HIGHLIGHTS

  • Explore the beautiful UNESCO world heritage streets of Cuenca – claimed to be Ecuador’s prettiest city
  • Marvel at the natural beauty of El Cajas national park
  • Trace Darwin's footsteps cruising the Galapagos Islands

Day 1 London / Quito
Fly to Latin America’s most impressive vital-stat-wrapped city; Quito - the world’s highest capital at 9,350 feet, perched just 12 miles north from the middle of the world and UNESCO stamped for having the best-preserved and least altered historic centre in Latin America. Buzzing with brightly dressed women it’s central plaza definitely offers up an exotic introduction to the country. Don’t be tricked though this timeless heart hides sophisticated night-life and a vibrant culinary scene.
Plaza Grande

Day 2 Quito
The city's crown jewel is certainly its 'Old Town', packed with colonial monuments and architectural treasures, chock-a-block full of museums, cathedrals and Baroque architecture local life continues amongst 17th-century facades, picturesque plazas and magnificent art-filled churches.
It is a photographers and shoppers paradise. Women scuttle around in colourful shawls and jaunty fedoras, men wearing cowboy hats set off by huge grins bounce over the cobbled streets in their jeeps and small boutique filled alleys and hidden craft shops are dotted around. Head off in the afternoon to enjoy spectacular views of the city and surrounding mountains from the top of Panecillo Hill and some obligatory posing with the Equatorial monument.
Plaza Grande I Meals : Breakfast

Day 3 Otavalo
It’s time to don your bargaining hat as today you will head off to the busy town of Otavalo, home to a large indigenous population and one of the most important markets in the Andes. For thousands of years traders have come to sell their dizzying array of textiles. Bargain for the exceptional weavings and tapestries the region is famous for before heading off to the song-filled home of a traditional musician in the village of Peguche, try your hand at locally made instruments, slurp on the countries delicious hot chocolate before returning to Quito in time for a sundowner in the picture postcard square.
Plaza Grande I Meals : Breakfast

Day 4 Quito / Cuenca
Hop on a flight to arguably Ecuador’s prettiest city Cuenca – home to the streets that time forgot, but UNESCO has noticed as it boasts these 6 important letters to it’s name. With it’s trademark skyline of massive rotundas and soaring steeples, bustling with flower markets and impressive monuments Cuenca’s charm lies in its cobbled stone streets full of geranium laden balconies and old ladies gossiping in the sun. With a marvellously alive handicraft tradition this is the place to pick up your Panama hat, and other delightful handcrafted treats.
Mansion Alcazar I Meals : Breakfast

Day 5 Cuenca
Quiet road leads to the quaint village of Gualaceo, this craft-shoppers paradise is located in a lush valley and it’s winding walkways maze around the riverfront. The villages of Paute, situated on the river of the same name and Chordeleg, known for its potters, weavers and embroiderers are also waiting for you on a relaxing day trip from Cuenca.
Be sure to check out how the much sought after paños are made - these Indigo-dyed cotton shawls with intricate fringing are the prized swoop of the traditional artisanal ‘feria’. Shopping done enjoy a lip-smacking lunch in a traditional rose-filled hacienda before heading back to Cuenca.
Mansion Alcazar I Meals : Breakfast, Lunch

Day 6 Cuenca / Guayaquil
Rugged landscapes and a chance to gulp back lung-full after lung-full of fresh mountain air is the perfect counter-balance to your sightseeing and El Cajas National Park offers both in bucket loads. Jagged rocks and a landscape not dissimilar to the wild Scottish highlands in its dramatic rolling beauty are sure to impress. Here Llamas and the more illusive spectacled bears and jaguars roam, their home a trekker’s paradise of glacial lakes, breath-taking waterfalls and trippy rock formations.
Soak it all in during a leisurely stroll and then hop back in the car to continue to Guayaquil, not the prettiest of Ecuador’s cities but your gateway to the magic of the Galapagos Islands.
Wyndham Guayaquil I Meals : Breakfast

Day 7 Guayaquil / Galapagos Islands
You leave the cultural delights of Quito behind this morning to fly to Baltra Island – your hop off point to a startling showcase of biodiversity, an isolated group of wild and wildlife laden volcanic islands, The Galapagos.
Discuss with your consultant which of our carefully curated portfolio of ships to choose, hop aboard and prepare to be wowed by the playful, distinctly un-camera-shy, residents of this iconic and enchanting archipelago.
Eric, Letty I Meals : Breakfast, Dinner

Days 8 - 13 Galapagos Islands
Cruising the famous waters is undoubtedly the best way to explore the splashing and stomping ground of the animals; these 13 volcanic islands scattered across nearly 30,000 square miles of ocean are populated by extraordinary and beautiful creatures, some of which are found nowhere else on our planet, spurring Charles Darwin to formulate his theory of evolution. It is the scientists holy grail even now, it’s draw however is the islands coquettishly charismatic animals, unafraid of humans, allow you approach so closely that to they become as thrilling for tourists as scientists.
Every day offers a different island, bay or cove to explore and different species to discover. Watch blue-footed boobies prance around statuesque rocks, snorkel with sea-lions or maybe even a shark or two. Don’t be scared, these creatures are more interested in playing than feeling threatened. Sublimely ignorant that you aren’t just another happy sea-dweller they play and blow bubbles around you. Taking a stroll across the moon like landscape you will wait for the ginormous tortoise to trundle across your path and on some of the beaches you will confuse crustated iguanas for rocks scattering the sand.
Eric, Letty, Flamingo I Meals : Breakfast, Dinner

Day 14 Galapagos / Guayaquil
All adventures must come to an end and as you swap the sea for the air your head will be filled with the mysteries of the islands. You will fly to Guayaquil for a last Ecuadorian dinner before preparing for your flight home tomorrow.
Wyndham Guayaquil I Meals : Breakfast

Day 15 Guayaquil / London
Spend the last hours of your adventure in Guayaquil strolling along the seafront Malecon, stretching your legs in the Botanical Gardens or exploring Barrio Las Peñas and its old wooden houses before your evening flight home.
Meals : Breakfast

Pricing
At A&K all of our journeys are individually tailored to suit your needs and timescale. As a guide this 15 day suggested holiday will cost from £5,995 per person, based on two sharing, excluding international flights.

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Accommodation


Celebration Holidays

Celebrate with a luxury holiday with Abercrombie & Kent

If you have birthday or anniversary coming up, or just fancy throwing one heck of a party, why not celebrate in style. Whatever the occasion, we are brimming with ideas. Find out more...

 

Abercrombie & Kent
A&K Offices

Our office in Quito is managed by a local team of experienced and passionate travel professionals with an intimate knowledge of Ecuador, enabling them to provide clients with great insight into this fascinating destination, and ensuring a seamless experience every step of the A&K journey. With their long standing personal connections and networks they're also there to help you uncover local secrets and experiences, and to open doors to people and places normally beyond the reach of the ordinary traveller.


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Call 01242 547 701 to speak to a specialist Enquire


Meet the Latin America Team

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Our Latin America team Graeme, Charlie, Melissa, Kelly, Kerry and Elli – are experts in designing the perfect holiday in Latin America to suit your personal needs, interests and budget.

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Useful info

Best time to be there

The Galapagos are best from April to August - not too warm and plenty of animals in their breeding seasons.

Fly to

Quito - LAN Airlines, daily via Madrid flying time 13 hours

time difference

GMT -5 hours

Visas

Not required for UK passport holders

Health Requirements

Yellow fever certificate required if arriving from an infected area
 


Best time to be there

June to September is the best time to enjoy the Andes whilst the Galapagos are best from April to August - not too warm and plenty of animals in their breeding seasons.

Fly to

Quito - LAN Airlines, daily via Madrid

flying time

13 hours

time difference

GMT -5 hours

Visas

Not required for UK passport holders

Health Requirements

Yellow fever certificate required if arriving from an infected area


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